This is a subject I've got more knowledge about than I really care to have.
(from volunteering at emergency housing.)
*RIDICULOUS* Reasonable seal-covers run _maybe_ $100 for a full-size
mattress or box spring. (see <http://www.usbedbugs.com for some good, but
somewhat high-priced ones.) You can seal a bed set to keep the critters out,
_or_ seal it to keep them in, til their dead. No need to replace anything.
Treatment _is_ something you can do yourself. But, be aware, it does take
some time for things to take effect -- _that_ doesn't change, whether you or
a pro apply the stuff.
The effective active ingredient in beg-bug treatments is pyrethrin
(better than DDT for this kind of critter, actually)
For pros, the premiere brand name product is "Kicker". "ExciteR" is an
equivalent at a significantly better 'generic' price. (circa $55 for a pint
of concentrate, which makes around 8 _gallons_ of DIY-strength spray)
In the 'home' products, there's a product called "Kills Bedbugs" (J.T. Eaton)
that is *the* stuff to use. (Circa $16 for a quart trigger-spray bottle)
Kicker/ExciteR are available as concentrates, that have to be diluted before
use. For 'amateur' use, the directions state that you must dilute to below a
specific strength; pro's can use it at stronger strengths.
"Kills Bedbugs" you can probably find in a local hardware store. Kicker
or ExciteR may have to be ordered. (easily found on the web/mail-order)
For 'do it yourself' treatment, the big thing is to make fairly _frequent_
treatments (circa 2x week to start) for the initial period. One _will_
notice a significant improvement by about the 2nd treatment. (The stuff
is effective for extended periods, but the 'potency' declines, thus the
advantage of the frequent initial application.
You can get everything you need for a whole series of DIY house treatments
for around $100. (circa $60 for concentrate, $30 for a sprayer, $10 for
The other part of evicting these unwanted guests is to launder _all_ the
bed linens and nightclothes in _hot_ water. That will take care of any
Keeping the bedding in those 'vacuum' bags isn't a bad idea, especially
if they go into the bag directly out of the dryer (or off the clothesline).
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